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1913- 1917

  • IE OCL P131/2/2/4/2
  • File
  • 1 June 1913-14 October 1917
  • Part of Loughton Papers

Letters sent by and sent to Theodora Trench from 1913 until 1917.

During this Theodora volunteered with the Red Cross as a Chauffeuse and as such the file contains letter relating to this. Examples include two 1916 letters from the Royal Automobile Club regarding driving tests and a 1916 letter from the Red Cross Voluntary aid detachment informing members of their latest activities.

The file also includes a copy of a letter from Moscow dated Oct 9th 1917. The letter discusses the increasing difficulty faced by those who wish to travel, 'It is no easy matter to get to Petrograd now-a-days; one has first to get permission from the commissaire of the town here and then get a ticket, and it is by no means easy to get either. , but got there at 12.10, and found the place shut'. The letter also discusses the hostility within society 'They seem to be taken by a sort of wave of madness, which brings out all the brute in them'.

1916 Rising Golden Jubilee Commemorative Committee

Files relating to the plans by Offaly County Council to commemorate the 1916 Rising at 50 years. Includes file containing records of attendance of delegates at the committee meetings (1966); minute book recording resolutions agreed by the County Committee of the 1916 Jubilee Commemorations with Mr Nicholas Egan presiding. The Tullamore Committee, with All O'Brennan as chair, organised the main celebration with a parade on Easter Monday and the commissioning of a commemorative film (1966-1967); large correspondence file concerning the plans for the commemorations and particularly with the commissioning of the film (1966-1967); a file containing the scripts for the film and a recent remastered DVD copy of the film, the original of which is now tis the irish Film Archives; and an accounts book recording subscriptions to the 1916 Commemoration Fund (1966-1967).

1918-1922

  • IE OCL P131/2/2/4/3
  • File
  • 10 April 1918-3 May 1922
  • Part of Loughton Papers

Letters to and from Theodora Trench between 1918 and 1922.
The majority of the letters were sent by Sheelah Trench.The letters cover a wide variety of topics.

One reoccurring theme throughout the letters are Sheelah's concerns over the 'Sinn Feiners' actions in Ireland. A letter dated Easter Sunday 1920 elaborates further, 'We hear that the Moneygall Police Barrack has been burnt down, besides Dunkevin, Ballacymackey and many other. That, and destroying Income Tax and other Government Offices, seems to have been the Sinn Feiners game for Easter Monday'.

Sheelah also includes letters and newspaper clippings that she believes may be of interest to Theodora. One such letter dated 24 February 1920 from Mr Hill, P.O.W Staff, Famagusta Cyprus to Benjamin Bloomfield Trench describes his experience working at a Prisoner of War camp in Cyprus and working alongside Irish soldiers.

Lefroy, Sheelah Georgiana Bertha

1943-1947

Letters sent to Theodora Trench between 1943 and 1947. The letters are a mixture of personal and business matters.

Included in the file is a 1945 letter from Haddie, Florence in which she passes on her thanks to Sheelah Trench for helping to locate her brother who had a bomb drop on his house.
1946 Business and personal letters sent to Theodora Trench in 1946. Includes a letter from Josephine Flanagan regarding the sale of a cockerel and a letter from Sheelah Lefroy sending birthday wishes.
1947 Letters sent to Theodora Trench in 1947. The letters are a mixture of pleasure and business. Topics covered include importing coal through Dublin General steam shipping and purchasing chicks from P Flanagan.

Administration

Contains lists of Irish Guards noting their name, regiment number, rank and where interned, including a separate listing of those from Birr; letters from Selfridge's & Co., Oxford St, London to Lois, Countess of Rosse, in relation to the contents of nine parcel types assembled for sending to the Irish Guards Prisoners of War; correspondence from Mary Britton, Rosfaraghan, Ferbane and Col. Douglas Proby, in relation to subscriptions collected in her village on behalf of Private B. Anderson (Reg No 3220), who is interned in Limburg; and correspondence between Major de Vesci, Regimental Adjutant, Irish Guards to Lady Rosse, mainly in relation to the movement of Irish Guards prisoners between POW camps in Germany so that parcels can be sent to them. Also includes ephemeral material such as newspaper cuttings relating to the Irish Guards, a packet of jam jar covers, and a copy of an illuminated address presented to Queen Mary from the Women of Ireland in July 1911, and distributed by Lady Aberdeen, the head of war relief in Ireland.

Annual Report 1880

Annual report, accounts and rental for year ending June 1880, wherein Digby contrasts the Geashill estate favourably with other estates in the country during this 'almost unprecedented agricultural disaster of the past season'. Reports that although the usual remittance is reduced by £1500 due to increased arrears, there was an overall net increase in rental income at £17,307.1.8.

Reports that there is an increase in the number of unskilled labour available and therefore more drainage works and land improvement projects were carried out with the result that there was hardly a person on the estate in want of work compared with other parts of Ireland where there was great distress and beginnings of famine. Notes that many of the projects are being executed under the Board of Works. To offset any failure of the potato crop on the estate, Digby reports that he has imported 50 tonnes of champion seed potatoes from Scotland and distributed among the tenantry.

Construction works included a pair of double cottages at Killeigh; a further addition to Thomas Cobbe's farmhouse at Annagharvey; a labourer's cottage for Mr Delamere at the Meelaghans; and the repair of the roof and offices at Ballymooney House. Forestry works included clearing and replanting of Scrubb Wood and new plantations at Gorteen and Derryadd.

Notes that the past year will long be remembered by every landlord and tenant 'as one of the most disastrous ever experienced', with bad weather, failure of root crops, and 'a potato crop more diseased than any since the famine years.' Warns that the Land League have seized upon the bad harvest as a means to increase agitation amongst tenants and have organised meetings the length and breadth of Ireland, and hopes that forthcoming legislation by the government will solve the Irish Land Question.

Annual Report 1881

Annual report, accounts and rental for year ending June 1881. Reports that the financial condition of the estate had disimproved, outstanding arrears remaining due and abandoned arrears considerably increased. Profit remitted was £8500, a decrease on previous years, although there was a net increase in the overall rental income. Also reports that the Roskeen lease was surrendered by the reps of Mr. Bailey, and that the farm at Ballydownan was surrendered by Mr Adams and now in Lord Digby's hands and set for grazing with newly purchased cattle.

In terms of land improvement, Digby reports on the completion of a number of Board of Works projects including the draining and squaring of the moors under Scrubb Wood, the deepening of the boundary stream at Cappancur and the sinking of a large main drain in Balinvally bog. Construction works included new offices for Mr Arthur of Killurin and Patrick Nugent of Ballycollin; new cottages completed at Killeigh; new cottage commenced in Geashill Village and assistance give to William Mathews to erect substantial new dwelling house in Killurin. Also reports on the thinning and replanting of Derrygunnigan Wood.

Warns that agrarian agitation is increasing encouraged by the Land League. Blames the Government for slow response to agitation. Reports on a 'monster meeting' held in Tullamore by the Land League prior to the winter collection of rents (1880) where the Geashill tenantry requested en masse Griffith's Valuation as a fair rent which was subsequently refused by Lord Digby, but who abated the rent by 10% on the half year's rent payable. Identifies William Adams as the leader of the agitation and describes the court proceedings taken against him individually. With the result of being faced with bankruptcy, Adams paid his rent and then surrendered farm at Ballydownan, with the result that all other agitation on the estate ceased and rents were collected within three weeks. Also refers to 'boycotting' occurring throughout the estate but that no acts of violence or outrages took place. A further attempt at withholding rent in May 1881 was similarly short-lived.

Annual Report 1882

Annual report, accounts and rental for year ending June 1882. Remarking on the 'extraordinary events in Ireland of the last 12 months', Digby reports that consequently there is a large amount of arrears, including abandoned arrears which are mainly the rents of Ballydownan and Roskeen farms which are in Lord Digby's hands having been surrendered.

Land improvements have ceased due to the suspension of rent and the generally disorganised state of the country, a new dwelling house for William Payne, Killeenmore being the chief expenditure. Thirty acres of young plantations in Derrygunnigan and Newtown woods and the maintenance of other young plantations accounted for expenditure in forestry.

Warns that the country is in a 'frightful crisis' and reports on the tactics of the Land League with their 'No Rent' manifesto (Autumn 1881), which was eagerly adopted and led to a complete suspension of the payment of rent. After an abatement was refused, tenantry on the Geashill Estate held a meeting in Killeigh in January 1882 at which a resolution was passed not to pay rent unless abatements were conceded. Proceedings were issued against nine of the principal agitators, their properties seized and put up for public auction in Tullamore. Digby reports that in seven cases, the tenants allowed him to be the purchaser, and in the other two cases, the tenants bought in their farms for the full amount of rent claimed and costs. Evictions followed, five of which required the aid of 'a large force of military and police and bailiffs supplied by the Property Defence Association.'

Annual Report 1883

Annual report, accounts and rental for year ending June 1883, describing a considerable improvement in the financial situation with a large drop in arrears outstanding due to the Arrears Act of 1882. Reports that abandoned and boycotted farms now account for 850 statute acres of land in Lord Digby's hands set for temporary grazing and necessitating the purchase of cattle. Also reports that despite a decrease in the net rental due to the action of the Land Commission Courts and voluntary reduction of rents, it was possible to remit profits of £11,500. No land improvements or works were carried out, but 50 acres of replanting was carried out at Derrygunnigan Wood, River Wood at Clonad and Derrygolan.

Describes a general improvement in the condition of the estate and attributes the cessation of agitation to the Prevention of Crimes Act brought in following the Phoenix Park murders in spring 1882.

Annual Report 1886

Annual report, accounts and rental for year ending June 1886, showing a further reduction in the gross rental received by £152.13.0 and noting a considerable increase in arrears outstanding mainly attributable to the continued and intensified depression in the value of almost all kind of stock and farm produce, recent proposed legislation and a renewed demand for alteration of land laws. Forestry works consisted of 20 acres planted in Derryclure Wood and Scrubb Wood.

Describes a further agitation at the winter collection of rents (1885) with the object of procuring an abatement of rents that have been recently judicially fixed. Also describes the 'great excitement' among the tenantry derived from the Home Rule movement and the Parnellite party.

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